Harris County Housing Study

November 2021   Houston, TX

Client

  • Harris County Community Services Department

Key Personnel

Team

  • Kinder Institute for Urban Research (Prime)
  • FordMomentum!
  • The University of Texas at Austin
  • CDS Community Development Strategies
Key Points

A study examining affordability and the needs surrounding housing in Harris County through a data driven community engagement process.

Affordable Housing

Developing affordable housing in a sustainable manner, with strong access to community amenities, is important to Harris County residents.

Financing

Filling the gap in financing affordable housing will take a generational investment of $60 billion, but Harris County already has $10 billion to put into play over the next 10 years.

Policy

Leveraging public and private dollars to complete projects, and combining these assets with policy strategies that help each dollar go further, will help meet residents’ needs.

In collaboration with The Kinder Institute for Urban Research at Rice University, Asakura Robinson conducted housing research for the Harris County Housing Study that provides strategies to meet the demand for affordable and sustainable housing development through 2030.

While the County has a reputation for housing affordability, the studies show that affordability is increasingly challenging, and that the demand for affordable homes greatly exceeds supply. This leads to a large number of households who spend more than the recommended 30% of their income on housing, classifying them as “cost burdened.” Environmental issues such as flooding and air quality, and transportation cost issues, also affect the feasibility of housing development in the long-term.

Asakura Robinson provided our affordable housing and community engagement expertise to help quantify residents’ priorities and recommend solutions to these challenges. Our engagement work included the creation of a survey for Harris County residents illustrating housing needs, and development of interactive online engagement techniques using hypothetical “family narratives” to illustrate trade-offs and values.

AR’s analysis included assistance in finalizing 10-year projected housing gaps and supply options, as well as development of recommendations around shared-equity approaches, uses of federal and local funding, appraisal disparities, and investment in municipal utility districts (MUDs). Throughout the study, AR was pleased to work with an innovative team including Kinder, FordMomentum!, the University of Texas at Austin, and CDS Community Development Strategies.

View the final Harris County Housing Study here.

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